Freedom: Part Three
Would a man who escaped and ran away from prison be free? He would no longer be behind the bars, and so he would be free in a certain sense, but all the police in the country would be looking for him, and waiting to put him back in prison again. That is not the kind of freedom that we have. Christ has made us free, and our old master, Satan, has no right to try to take us back into his slavery again. In our first lesson we said that we were in slavery to three masters—Satan, sin, and self. These no longer have any power over us, because Christ is our Savior.
It is wonderful to know that we are free from sin. That does not mean only that we will not be punished for our sins. It means that our sins have been taken away. Sin was like a heavy burden that we had to carry. Now Christ has taken it all away, and we are free from it. We will prove it from our Bibles. Turn to Romans 6:18 and 22. Read them carefully and see what they say we are free from. Sin was not only like a burden, it was also like a terrible king ruling over us. But Romans 6:14 says that "Sin shall not have dominion over you,” which means that sin shall not rule over us anymore. It can no longer make us obey it, for Christ is our King.
It used to be, before you were born again by believing in the Lord Jesus Christ you could not help sinning. In fact, everything that you did, whether it seemed good or bad, was really sin, for unsaved people cannot do anything that pleases God. But now that you are saved, you are free from sinning—you do not have to sin, for Christ has broken sins power over you. If you are tempted to do what is wrong, you do not have to yield to the temptation, because Christ has freed you from the power of sin. If you trust in Him, sin will not continue to rule your life.
Another thing from which we are made free by the death of Christ, is the law. Now the law is a very good thing, and we all want to keep the ten commandments. But the trouble is that the law cannot make us good, for we are all sinners, and so weak that we cannot keep the law perfectly. So, instead of making us good, the law just shows us that we are not good.
Try as we may, that is, of course, in our own strength, we find ourselves breaking God's law every day. In Deuteronomy we read the commandment, "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart.” Now you know that you do not love God with all your heart, for you often do things that displease Him. So this part of the law makes you unhappy, for it shows you how bad you are. Yet the death of Christ has even freed us from this, for God tells us that we are no longer under the law. (Read Galatians 3:24-25; Galatians 4:5; Romans 7:6). This does not mean that we may break the law, but that God’s Holy Spirit who lives in all who are born again, will keep the law for us, so that all we will have to do will be to trust Him, instead of trying, trying, trying, to keep the law. If we yield our hearts to Him, and do as He shows us moment by moment, we will be happy for we will be pleasing our Lord.
- Why does sin not rule over us anymore?
- Why could we not help sinning? How is this changed when we become Christians?
- Why can we not keep the law perfectly?
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